Books, Hobbies, Pop Culture

4 Book Annotation Ideas & Supplies So You Can Get Started Today

book annotation ideas

There’s nothing like tearing through a good book for the very first time. However, there’s something magical about going back through one of your favorite books, rereading scenes that impacted you – potentially even changed your life or your perspective. There are few books that I’d reread again, but these books, are books I’m absolutely obsessed with. I love flipping back through the pages, marking down my favorite moments, writing in the margins, highlighting passages and doodling everywhere. I’ve also come to notice that this isn’t just something I enjoy. Lately, I’ve seen the most beautiful book annotations shared online and I’m so inspired. Here are some of my favorite book annotation ideas, and some supplies to help you out.


Let’s go back to the basics. While we’ve all used highlighters in school, this type of highlighting is different (particularly, it’s less neon and more pastel). These pastel Zebra Midliner markers are my all-time favorite, and I especially love that they are double-sided. Each one has a thin tip and a thick tip, which makes them so easy to use for highlighting, circling, drawing arrows and shading in drawings. There are also so many different colors to choose from so you can get creative, and make each color means something else. Scenes that make you angry? Highlight in red. Scenes that make you sad? Blue. Lovely love scenes? Pink marker! Obviously, I don’t need to teach you about highlighting since it’s a known tool – but here’s a little reminder to add in some beautiful color.


Once again, you might have had some neon tabs in high school, but packs like these are beautiful. There’s something so artsy and pretty about a bunch of tabs sticking out of the end of a book. Whether you tab over the words (these tabs are transparent so you can read through them), tab up or tab out, they are a super fun tool to use. I like that Amazon offers so many different color palettes, so you can use different palettes for each book – personally, I’d try to match the season or vibe of the book. Use fall colors for a cozy read and brighter pastels for a spring romance.

Writing in the margins

First of all, the Pilot G2 is the most superior pen. These colored ones are amazing for writing in the margins. I particularly like to write in colored pens while annotating so you can further continue your color coding and match your highlighting and/or tabs. Writing in the margins is so much fun, and its so exciting to scribble down your thoughts while reading (or rereading) a book.

Little doodles

While you can definitely doodle with your annotation pens, I’d also recommend some drawing pens. I’ve seen the most beautiful doodle within book annotations. Whether they are big or small, drawings add a lot of life to your annotations. While annotating, doodling really helps my imagination run wild, and they really help me think about the central themes and visuals within a novel. While it might seem like it would interrupt your reading flow, it actually is really enjoyable for me, especially if it is a novel that I’d like to keep forever. When I choose to keep a book for my collection, I want it to be as beautifully and well taken care of as I can.

What do you think of these book annotation ideas? Do you like annotating novels? Let us know in the comments below!

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